A summary of what you need to know today, compiled by The Globe’s news desk on Nov. 27, 2012
Tories hold Calgary Centre
While the Conservatives had an easy time of it in the Ontario riding of Durham, the by-election in the Tory stronghold of Calgary Centre was no cakewalk . Joan Crockatt, a former journalist, prevailed in the closer-than-expected race that saw the centre-left vote split between Liberal and Green candidates. In a third race, the NDP fended off a strong showing by the Green Party to hold onto the Victoria riding in British Columbia. Here is columnist John Ibbitson’s analysis of the Calgary vote.
Deal, then no deal in Goma
There are conflicting reports over the status of a deal that had apparently been reached with M23 rebels Monday to withdraw from the strategic city of Goma in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Despite reports that talks in Uganda had brokered a deal to retreat from then city, rebel leader Jean-Marie Runiga said Tuesday his soldiers will not withdraw unless Congo president Joseph Kabila agrees to their demands – including the release of prisoners – that were quickly dismissed by the government. The advance by the M23 rebels – believed to be supported by neighbouring Rwanda – have raised concerns the region will be drawn once again into a wider conflict. For background on the rebellion, click here.
Arafat’s body exhumed
The mystery whether Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat was poisoned is one step closer to being solved. His remains were quietly exhumed Tuesday morning, samples taken discreetly taken by a Palestinian doctor and handed over to Swiss, French and Russian authorities. The samples will be tested for the presence of polonium, a radioactive substance that was detected earlier in tests on Arafat personal effects provided by his widow. No autopsy was done on Mr. Arafat after his death in 2004, and questions have lingered about the rapid deterioration of his health before his death.
Another day, another Greek debt deal
Euro zone leaders appear to have forged a deal that will release more funds to debt-addled Greece. The deal – under which Greece has agreed to take measures to further reduce debts – opens that way for the next instalment of financial aid in December and will allow the government to pay wages and pensions. The news was welcomed by European markets.
Obama launches fiscal cliff tour
With the year-end deadline looming ever closer, U.S. President Barack Obama is taking his case to the American people. While talks continue between the White House and Congressional leaders about ways to avoid tax hikes and spending cuts set to take effect in the new year, the President plans to huddle with small-business leaders, middle-class Americans and others in a series of events this week to build support for allowing taxes to rise on wealthy Americans. The week will culminate in a trip to Pennsylvania Friday, his first public U.S. event since his re-election earlier this month.
Power scramble erupts at Toronto’s City Hall
The fallout from a judge’s decision removing Toronto Mayor Rob Ford from office will intensify Tuesday as Council meets. While Mr. Ford plans to appeal the ruling, an unofficial campaign to replace him has already begun with councillors scrambling to curry support. Read The Globe’s story here.
Massive opposition rally in Cairo
A massive rally is planned for Tuesday in Cairo to protest President Mohammed Morsi’s controversial recent decrees that grant him near-absolute powers. On Monday, Mr. Morsi met with the country’s top judges in an attempt to resolve the crisis, but the move was dismissed by many as providing no real concessions.